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Matthew Henry

Matthew Henry's Complete Commentary - Exodus 13:17-22

Here is, I. The choice God made of their way, Exod. 13:17, 18. He was their guide. Moses gave them direction but as he received it from the Lord. Note, The way of man is not in himself, Jer. 10:23. He may devise his way, and design it; but, after all, it is God that directs his steps, Prov. 16:9. Man proposes, but God disposes, and in his disposal we must acquiesce, and set ourselves to follow providence. There were two ways from Egypt to Canaan. One was a short cut from the north of Egypt to... read more

John Gill

John Gills Exposition of the Bible Commentary - Exodus 13:20

And they took their journey from Succoth ,.... On the second day, as Jarchi observes, from their coming out of Egypt, which was the sixteenth of Nisan: and encamped in Etham , in the edge of the wilderness which had its name from it, and was called the wilderness of Etham, Numbers 33:8 . Etham is said to be eight miles from Succoth F19 Bunting's Travels, p. 81. . Josephus F20 Antiqu. l. 2. c. 15. sect. 1. calls Succoth Latopolis, which had its name from the fish Latus,... read more

Adam Clarke

Adam Clarke's Commentary on the Bible - Exodus 13:20

Encamped in Etham - As for the reasons assigned on Exodus 13:17 , God would not lead the Israelites by the way of the Philistines' country, he directed them towards the wilderness of Shur, Exodus 15:22 , upon the edge or extremity of which, next to Egypt, at the bottom of the Arabian Gulf, lay Etham, which is the second place of encampment mentioned. See the extracts from Dr. Shaw at the end of Exodus. See Clarke's note on Exodus 40:38 . read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Exodus 13:17-20

Moses, at this point of his narrative, being about to trace the onward march of the Israelites from Succoth to Etham, in the direction of the Red Sea, anticipated, it would seem, an objection on the part of his reader, who would naturally ask, Why was not the direct route eastward taken and Canaan entered on the south-west after some half-dozen marches? In Exodus 13:17 , Exodus 13:18 , he gives the reply— 1 . God led them, they did not determine their own route; and 2. God... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Exodus 13:17-21

The way of the wilderness by the Red Sea. The direct road to Canaan lay through the land of the Philistines. God, however, did not lead the people by this way, but round by the Red Sea. "For God said, Lest peradventure the people repent when they see war, and they return to Egypt" ( Exodus 13:17 ). Another reason was that he designed to make his covenant with them, and give them laws, in the solitude of the "mountain of God" ( Exodus 3:12 ). I. REDEEMED FROM EGYPT , THE ... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Exodus 13:17-22

Israel's journey the emblem of the Christian's pilgrimage. I. GOD 'S TENDER CARE FOR HIS PEOPLE . 1 . Trials and temptations are proportioned to their ability to-bear them. "He led them not through the way of the land of the Philistines." The conflict with these was not too much for his strength, but it was too much for Israel's faith. They would have made shipwreck at the very outset. He will not suffer us to be tempted beyond that we are able to bear. 2 . It "was... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Exodus 13:17-22

Fire and cloud. "And the Lord went before them," etc. ( Exodus 13:21 ). Israel might have been in Canaan within ten days. Reason why not is given Exodus 13:17 . This however, not a reason for the forty years wandering: but only for the circuitous route by the desert of Sinai. The line of Israel's march for the first two days is soon given. They start from Rameses , capital of Goshen, a store city, recently built by the Hebrews, the king there possibly. The first stage was Succoth ... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Exodus 13:18-21

It is the method of the Divine action to accomplish ends by circuitous means. God "led the Israelites about." Instead of conducting them straight from Tanis to Canaan in the course of six or seven days, he carried them down nearly to the furthest point of the Sinaitic peninsula, at least two hundred miles out of the direct line of route. He afterwards made them occupy in desert wanderings the space of forty years, and brought them into Canaan on the side furthest from Egypt—that which... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Exodus 13:20

And they took their journey from Succoth and encamped in Etham . On the probable position of Etham, see the "Introduction" to this book. The word probably means "House of Turn," and implies the existence at the place of a temple of the Sun-God, who was commonly worshipped as Tuna or Atum. The name, therefore, is nearly equivalent to Pithom ( Exodus 1:11 ), which means "City of Turn;" but it is not likely that Moses designated the same place by two distinct appellations. The site of Etham,... read more

Albert Barnes

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible - Exodus 13:20

Etham - The house or “sanctuary of Tum” (the Sun God worshipped especially by that name in Lower Egypt), was in the immediate vicinity of Heliopolis, called by the Egyptians the fortress of Zar, or Zalu (i. e. of foreigners); the frontier city where the Pharaohs of the 18th dynasty reviewed their forces when about to enter upon a campaign on Syria. The name Pithom (see Exodus 1:11) has precisely the same meaning with Etham, and may possibly be identified with it. read more

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